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MILES DAVIS: THE BIRTH OF THE COOL

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Watching Stanley Nelson’s new documentary, I felt both exhilarated and frustrated—just as I did while following Miles Davis’s career. I can’t imagine a more vivid or thorough portrait of this seminal figure in the world of jazz. Everyone you…

CELEBRATING OSCAR LEVANT

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Oscar Levant was one of a kind: a piano prodigy, Gershwin acolyte, songwriter, noted wit, radio and television personality, best-selling author, and even on occasion a screen actor. His fans are legion, and I am one of them…but even…

FROM ‘SAMSON’ TO ‘SHANE’: THE UNSUNG VICTOR YOUNG

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It’s a matter of record that Jonny Greenwood earned an Oscar nomination for scoring Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread…but a significant piece of music that sets the tone for this moody character portrait is Victor Young’s “My Foolish Heart,” played…

ON THE RECORD: BING CROSBY AND MORE…

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This is a great time to be a Bing Crosby fan, as the singer’s estate continues to mine the Crosby vaults for rare goodies and releasing them on CD. The latest duo: a reissue of one of my favorite…

CHASING TRANE: AN ARTIST SUPREME

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This has been a rich year for jazz-related documentaries. That happy trend continues with Chasing Trane, a tribute to John Coltrane by filmmaker John Scheinfeld, whose previous credits include The U.S. vs. John Lennon and Who is Harry Nilsson…

TWO FANTASTIC JAZZ DOCUMENTARIES

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As a lifelong jazz buff I was eager to see I Called Him Morgan to learn more about one of my favorite trumpeters, Lee Morgan. His recordings from the 1950s and 60s still sound vibrant and fresh today. I…

VINCE GIORDANO: THERE’S A FUTURE IN THE PAST

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If you are already a fan of Vince Giordano and The Nighthawks like me, you’ll need no urging to see this new documentary by Dave Davidson and Amber Edwards. It opens at the Cinema Village in Manhattan today. For…

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